MRI Scanner – my hour-or-so of fun thanks to an anomaly in my heart

mri-scannerMRI Scanner – the words make me think putting myself inside a tiny Smarties tube, due to the similarly circular nature, but in practice, as Bruce Willis said in Die Hard, playing hard-as-nails cop John McClane, “Now I know what a god-damn TV dinner feels like!”, such is the restricted feeling you get.

The basis behind it follows my aortic valve replacement operation in 1994, and both before and after that I have had regular check-ups at the Manchester Royal Infirmary. Then after a recent check-up, five months ago, I was referred for an MRI scanner appointment due to an “anomaly” in one of my heart chambers. My consultant was a Mr Borg, so I can say that in my life, I have ‘engaged the Borg’.

I wish I’d taken a picture at the time, but it looked like the equivalent of if my dentist had taken an x-ray of my teeth when there’s a piece of chicken stuck in them – just a fleshly little mass flapping about, pointlessly, but just won’t go away.

Anyway, this anomaly could be something or nothing. Either way, I suggested to the doctor that he put his thumb over the x-ray machine to hide the problem, which he subsequently did, and I went “Yay!”… but that still didn’t absolve me of having to have this procedure.

After waiting for ages, the appointment finally happened last Wednesday. Based on what I know about an MRI Scanner, they allow you to take in a CD to listen to during the procedure, so I took in a Prog Rock disc which I bought from a charity shop for 19p. It’s called “Out There” and features Asia, Caravan and Porcupine Tree, hoping I could listen to that. Unfortunately, I couldn’t, since (a) this particular machine wasn’t set up to cater for external music being filtered in, and (b) the doctor in charge would regularly tell me to “breathe in, breathe out, hold your breath”, and so on.


An MRI scanner, yesterday.

Things I didn’t like about this procedure beforehand? Well, it was a 10.30am appointment, yet they wanted me there NINETY minutes early so they could take some bloods. However, that was a relatively small part of the proceedings and from then on it was about 20 minutes until I went into the room, so certain elements of it moved on apace more than I expected.

Alas, it was to be held at Wythenshawe Hospital. My issue with that place? Well, for three times in just over a year, my father had been admitted there due to not being well at all. I will just say that he’s now out of hospital and back home, but I’ve been back and forth to that place so many times in the last year or so that I’m pig-sick of the place. That has no bearing on the staff, by the way. They’re all great. Apart from Nurse Ratched in one of the wards where, after arriving around 20 minutes before mealtime hours, after a long day at work, despite my telling her of my situation, she basically ordered me out of there and told me I could wait in some other room for an hour until “protected mealtime” was over. Well, she could fuck right off. I wish I’d complained at the time, but at that point I’d brought along the items my Dad needed there and then, and arranged to call him later on to continue our conversation, since by the time “protected mealtime” was over, it would be almost time for MY mealtime, and the M60 traffic would be getting even more of a nightmare.

The parking is a nightmare, there, too. It’s £3.00 for up to 2hrs, £4.00 for 3hrs, and so on. I wouldn’t mind if the parking charges went to the hospital itself, but as with all others I’ve ever visited, all the money goes to the private company who has erected the horrible barriers the stop you getting out without paying. And that’s why I used to love the car park area by the maternity unit, since those barriers were broken for around a year, so I would always park in there. Unfortunately, on my last trip there, while my father was still inside, the barrier had been fixed and I made a quick turn before having to go inside. Instead, I park by some nearby shops before you reach the hospital. This means I have to walk past an area of vast undergrowth which reminded me of a section in The Last Of Us (go to 7:45 at the video below).

Oh, and what I also hate about Wythenshawe Hospital is that outside they have numerous “NO SMOKING” signs, yet they have scores of patients and visitors sat right next to them… SMOKING! And no-one bothers to do anything about this, so to get into the hospital, you have to walk past a load of smelly, ignorant bastards.

Go to page 2 for more on my MRI Scanner experience.

The Last Of Us: Walkthrough: Part 12 – Bill’s Town: Graveyard (720p HD) – DVDfeverGames


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